Manager Spotlight offers a small insight into the heads of incredible managers, and this week is the 100th spotlight! We are excited to share that one of the MMF founders, previous chair and MMF custodian Keith Harris is in the spotlight this week.
How long have you worked in management?
I have been working in management since 1974.
Who do you manage now?
These days I very occasionally do some management work for Stevie Wonder still.
Where did you find your first client and what inspired you to take them on?
My first client were a band some of whom had been school friends. I was inspired to take them on because I thought that they were really talented musicians, and I was desperate to get into the music business and back then that was a suitable entry point for someone with little or no experience, but a few music business contacts.
What has been the highlight of your management career to date?
The day that I put Marvin Gaye and Diana Ross on stage with Stevie Wonder at Wembley, was one of several highlights, alongside walking ,with Stevie Wonder, Coretta Scott King, (Martin Luther King’s widow) and Gil Scott Heron, on the 1980 March in Washington in support of the Martin Luther King holiday campaign.
What do you think are the big challenges for a manager in 2021?
The big challenges for a manager in 2021 are mainly to do with trying to compete with the sheer volume of material that is being released, and trying to make sure that all revenue avenues for an artist are exploited since streaming only pays well for those artists at the top of the tree.
What music are you currently listening to?
I am currently listening to some of the Artists managed by two of my sons. Pa Salieu, Berwyn, and Hajhaj and other than their acts Tiken Jah Fakoly, and the Americana Act Lady Nade